15 AND UNDER B – NORTH GAMBIER 26 d MILLICENT 18
IT was a victory set up in the first half when North Gambier reversed its second semi final result against Millicent with a grand final win.
While the Saints struggled to move the ball in the opening quarter, North was able to find shooters Claire Mitchell, fresh from her win in the association best and fairest count, and Mia Griffith, who was judged best on court in the final washup.
It was one-way traffic in the opening quarter until Millicent settled and scored late to still be in touch with a five-goal deficit.
The second quarter is where the damage was really done.
Zoe Davison was forced from the court with a pre-existing injury and her replacement Georgia Nulty had an immediate impact, coming on at wing attack and feeding the ball with precision.
North’s defensive effort, which was good in the first quarter, was even better in the second as circle defenders Raine Darimaani and Isabella Stafford created plenty of turnover ball.
They only conceded one goal for the quarter as the Tigers established a convincing 11-goal half-time lead.
The Saints swung the changes at the main break and the new look circle defensive combination of Eva Crowe and Jeda Hibberd certainly had an impact.
However, the accuracy from Griffith and Mitchell, converting eight from nine as a duo, ensured the Tigers remained in control.
Millicent’s Tahnee Grosser, who was the star of the second semi final, moved out to goal attack and improved her output but the Saints just could not make inroads and the margin was 13 at the final change.
Grosser was again the star of the final quarter but it was too little, too late from the Saints.
Despite winning the quarter by five, thanks in no small part to some Hibberd brilliance as well, the damage was done and North held on for an eight-goal win.